LAYTON -- Davis Hospital and Medical Center now has a specialized radiation treatment for breast and prostate cancers.
Brachytherapy is an advanced cancer treatment that uses radioactive seeds that are placed in or near the tumor, delivering a high dose of radiation while reducing exposure to surrounding tissues.
"The primary advantages of brachytherapy are the ability to deliver a high radiation dose to the cancer area while protecting the nearby normal tissues and organs that surround the cancer site, a much shorter treatment cycle and unsurpassed cure rates," said Dr. Roger Hansen, a radiation oncologist at Davis Hospital.
"Brachytherapy delivers treatment in a matter of days, versus the many weeks required by other cancer treatments."
During the treatment, thin, flexible catheters are placed in the tumors. A single radioactive source moves in and out of the catheter, treating the cancer from the inside out, Hansen said.
The treatment can be customized to better fit the patient's anatomy to avoid overtreating normal tissue, such as the skin, bladder or underlying chest wall.
Derek Vance, chief operating officer at the hospital, said it takes five to seven minutes for each treatment session.
"Brachytherapy is used primarily for patients with prostate, breast or cervical cancer," he said. "We started this four weeks ago and have treated 15 patients, and are booked out for the next three months."
The treatment has also been used in lung, esophageal and rectal cancers, as well as head and neck cancers.
Mike Jensen, CEO at Davis Hospital, said the latest treatment helps meet a significant need in Davis County.
"We are dedicated to the fight against cancer and have made it a priority at Davis Hospital and Medical Center."